Indulge in the Sweet and Savory Delight of Pig Pickin Cake – A Southern Classic!

Pig Pickin Cake is a delicious and unique dessert that originated in the southern region of the United States. This cake is a must-try for anyone who loves sweet and tangy flavors, as it combines pineapple, mandarin oranges, and whipped cream to create a mouth-watering treat that will leave you wanting more.

What is a Pig Pickin Cake?

A pig pickin cake is a Southern dessert that has become a staple at many gatherings, especially in the Carolinas. It’s a light and fluffy yellow cake that’s typically made with mandarin oranges and pineapple, then topped with whipped cream and coconut flakes. The cake gets its name from the tradition of “pig pickins,” which are outdoor barbecues where whole pigs are roasted and served.

The History of Pig Pickin Cakes

The origins of the pig pickin cake tradition are somewhat unclear, but it’s believed to have started in the South during the mid-20th century. The cake became popular at pig pickins because it was easy to transport and could feed a large crowd. Over time, it became a beloved dessert for all types of gatherings, from church picnics to family reunions.

The Meaning Behind the Name

The name “pig pickin” comes from the process of roasting an entire pig over an open fire or pit until it’s fully cooked. Once the meat has been cooked, guests gather around to “pick” off pieces of meat with their hands or utensils. This communal way of eating is often accompanied by sides like coleslaw, baked beans, and cornbread.

Pig Pickin Cake vs Pineapple Upside Down Cake

While pig pickin cakes may contain pineapple as one of their ingredients, they’re not to be confused with pineapple upside-down cakes. Unlike pineapple upside-down cakes which have pineapples on top of them, pig pickin cakes incorporate crushed pineapple into their batter for added flavor.

Ingredients Used in a Pig Pickin Cake?

A traditional pig pickin cake recipe calls for basic ingredients like flour, sugar, eggs, and butter. However, what sets this cake apart from others is its use of mandarin oranges and crushed pineapple in the batter. These fruits add a unique sweetness and tanginess to the cake that’s hard to resist.

Main Ingredients

  • All-purpose flour
  • Granulated sugar
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Butter or margarine
  • Eggs
  • Mandarin oranges (canned)
  • Crushed pineapple (canned)
  • Vanilla extract

Toppings and Frosting Ingredients

  • Heavy whipping cream or whipped topping
  • Powdered sugar
  • < li>Cream cheese
    < li>Sour cream
    < li>Coconut flakes

Preparation and Serving of a Traditional Pig Pickin Cake?

Baking the Cake Layers:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

  2. Add in butter or margarine to create a crumbly mixture.

  3. In another mixing bowl beat eggs until light in color. Add in mandarin oranges with their juice along with crushed pineapples.

  4. Gently fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients until well combined.

  5. Pour batter into three 9-inch round cake pans, and bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

  6. Let the cakes cool down before frosting them.

Frosting the Cake:

  1. In a mixing bowl, beat heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Add in powdered sugar and continue beating until well combined.

  2. In another mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and sour cream together until smooth. Fold in whipped cream mixture until well combined.

  3. Place one layer of cake on a serving platter and spread frosting evenly over it. Repeat with all layers.

  4. Sprinkle coconut flakes on top of the cake as desired.

Variations and Regional Differences in Pig Pickin Cake Recipes?

While there is a traditional recipe for pig pickin cake that has been passed down through generations, there are also several variations that have emerged over time. Some people like to add pecans or walnuts to their cakes for added crunch, while others prefer to use different types of fruit like cherries or blueberries.

Different Fruits Used:

  • Cherries
  • Blueberries
  • Peaches
  • Raspberries
  • Mangoes

Different Frostings Used:

  • Cream cheese frosting with pineapple juice instead of sour cream
    < li > Buttercream frosting with lemon zest
    < li > Whipped cream frosting with coconut flakes
    < li > Chocolate ganache frosting with orange zest

Occasions for Serving Pig Pickin Cakes?

Pig pickin cakes are typically served at outdoor gatherings like barbecues, picnics, and family reunions. They’re also popular at church events, weddings, and birthday parties. The cake’s light and fruity flavor makes it a perfect dessert for warm weather occasions.

Southern Celebrations:

  • Fourth of July
  • Labor Day Weekend
  • Memorial Day Weekend
  • Father’s day BBQs
  • Graduation parties

Holiday Celebrations:

  • Easter Sunday Brunches
    < li > Christmas Dinners
    < li > Thanksgiving feasts
    < li>New Year’s Eve Parties

Making Ahead or Preparing Fresh: What’s Best for Pig Pickin Cakes?

If you’re short on time, you can make pig pickin cakes ahead of time and store them in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve them. However, if you want the cake to be as fresh as possible, it’s best to prepare it the day of your event.

Making Ahead:

  1. Bake the cake layers and let them cool down completely.

  2. Frost each layer separately then stack them on top of each other.

  3. Cover the cake with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve it.

Preparing Fresh:

  1. Bake the cake layers the day of your event and let them cool down completely.

  2. Frost each layer separately then stack them on top of each other.

  3. Serve the cake immediately or store it in a cool, dry place until you’re ready to serve it.

Cultural and Symbolic Meanings Associated with Pig Pickin Cakes?

Pig pickin cakes have become a symbol of Southern hospitality and tradition. The act of roasting a pig over an open fire is deeply rooted in Southern culture, and pig pickin cakes have become a beloved dessert that’s often served at these events. The cake’s light and fruity flavor represents the warm weather and laid-back lifestyle that’s associated with Southern living.


  • Southern Hospitality
  • Tradition
  • Laid-back Lifestyle

Cultural Significance:

  • Represents Southern Culture
    < li > Symbolizes Communal Eating
    < li > Celebrates Outdoor Gatherings
    < li>Signifies Warm Weather Occasions

Cultural and Symbolic Meanings Associated with Pig Pickin Cakes

Origins of Pig Pickin Cakes

Pig pickin cakes are a traditional dessert that originated in the Southern United States. The cake is typically served at pig roasts, which are popular events in the region. The cake itself is made with a yellow cake mix, mandarin oranges, and pineapple, and is topped with whipped cream frosting. The origins of the name “pig pickin” come from the tradition of roasting a whole pig on a spit and then picking the meat off the bones to serve to guests.

Symbolism of Pig Pickin Cakes

In addition to being a delicious dessert, pig pickin cakes also have cultural and symbolic meanings associated with them. In Southern culture, pig roasts are often seen as community events that bring people together. The act of roasting a whole pig symbolizes abundance and generosity, as it provides enough food to feed a large group of people. Similarly, pig pickin cakes are often served at these events as a symbol of hospitality and warmth.

Ingredients in Pig Pickin Cakes

The ingredients used in pig pickin cakes also have symbolic meanings. For example, mandarin oranges represent good luck and prosperity, while pineapple represents hospitality and friendship. These ingredients reflect the values of Southern culture, which places great importance on community and relationships.

Pig Roasts as Cultural Events

Pig roasts have been an important part of Southern culture for centuries. They are often held for special occasions such as weddings or family reunions, but they can also be spontaneous gatherings among friends and neighbors. These events provide an opportunity for people to come together and celebrate their shared heritage and traditions.

  • Pig roasts are often accompanied by live music and dancing, which adds to the festive atmosphere.
  • Guests are encouraged to bring their own dishes to share, which reinforces the sense of community and generosity.
  • Pig pickin cakes are just one of many traditional foods that are served at these events.

Overall, pig pickin cakes are more than just a dessert – they represent the values and traditions of Southern culture. Whether enjoyed at a pig roast or on their own, these cakes are a delicious reminder of the importance of community, hospitality, and friendship.

In conclusion, Pig Pickin Cake is a delicious and unique dessert that combines the flavors of pineapple, mandarin oranges, and coconut. It is perfect for any occasion and will surely impress your guests with its sweet and tangy taste.


Why is it called pig pickin cake?

The cookbook titled “The Absolute Best Dump Cake Cookbook: More Than 60 Tasty Dump Cakes” explains that the name “dump cake” comes from its popularity at Southern pig roasts and barbecues. At these events, guests would pick the tender meat off the cooked pig, which became known as a “pig pickin’.”

What is pig pickin cake made of?

For a delightful end to a BBQ gathering, try out this refreshing Pig Pickin’ Cake. The cake features layers of yellow cake sandwiched with a fruity frosting made up of whipped topping, pineapple, vanilla instant pudding, and pecans, creating a cake that is as distinct as its name and will become a summer favorite.

Why is it called Coon Hunters cake?

This delicious cake was first created by hunters in the woods of Louisiana, who are known for their cooking skills. It is incredibly moist and tasty.

What is a sock it to me cake?

Sock it to Me Cake is a classic cake recipe that begins with a boxed cake mix, like the popular 7Up Cake. The mix is enhanced with sour cream, eggs, vanilla, and additional sugar. The cake is then baked in a bundt pan, with a tasty filling of cinnamon pecans running through the center.

What is the meaning of pig pickin?

A pig pickin’ is a social event that is popular in the southern United States, where a whole hog (usually a castrated male pig) is barbecued for consumption. This gathering is also referred to as rolling a pig, pig pull, hog roast, pig roast, or “cochon de lait” among Cajun communities.

What is Vietnam cake?

Vietnam is known for its various types of cakes made from sticky rice, including banh gio (also known as banh tro). Banh gio is made by soaking glutinous rice in ash water and is made with simple ingredients like lime, banana leaves, and molasses.

A pig pickin cake is a Southern dessert that is typically made with mandarin oranges and pineapple, topped with whipped cream and coconut flakes. It originated in the mid-20th century and became popular at outdoor barbecues called “pig pickins.” The cake incorporates crushed pineapple into its batter for added flavor, making it unique from pineapple upside-down cakes. Its main ingredients include flour, sugar, eggs, butter, mandarin oranges, and crushed pineapple.

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